KareAnderson

This Year’s Most Irritating Phrases

In language on November 20, 2008 at 8:46 pm

For the ten most irritating phrases we turn to Oxford University’s massive language database that tracks useage, with Damp Squid author, Jeremy Butterfield as our guide. In “the great hierarchy of verbal fatigue” they are:
1. At the end of the day
2. Fairly unique
3. I personally
4. At this moment in time
5. With all due respect
6. Absolutely
7. It’s a nightmare
8. Shouldn’t of
9. 24/7
10. It’s not rocket science

Butterfield notes, “We use language in chunks of words–as one linguist put it, ‘we know words by the company that they keep.’”

Now, the word of the year according to Countdown’s Susie Dent is credit crunch. I guess the English can turn a frequently-used phrase into a word. In her Words of the Year, Susie Dent also discusses newer words including boytox, moofer, ninja loans, funt, jingle mail, rickrolling, nomophobia and the inevitable googleability.

Can you make up a word that will appear in Dent’s book next year?

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